Monday, July 24, 2017

Blog Tour Review - Wildfire by Ilona Andrews Excerpt Giveaway @ilona_andrews @avonbooks @TastyBookTours

 I am so excited to be a part of the blog tour for Wildfire by Ilona Andrews.  I am so in love with this series and am convinced that everything Ilona Andrews writes must turn to gold.   Be sure to Follow the Tour!

Wildfire by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #3
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: July 25, 2017
Date Read: July 22, 2017 (2nd read)
Length:  384 pages
Source: Edelweiss
From Ilona Andrews, #1 New York Times bestselling author, the thrilling conclusion to her Hidden Legacy series, as Nevada and Rogan grapple with a power beyond even their imagination…

Nevada Baylor can’t decide which is more frustrating — harnessing her truthseeker abilities or dealing with Connor “Mad” Rogan and their evolving relationship. Yes, the billionaire Prime is helping her navigate the complex magical world in which she’s become a crucial player—and sometimes a pawn—but she also has to deal with his ex-fiancée, whose husband has disappeared, and whose damsel-in-distress act is wearing very, very thin.

Rogan faces his own challenges, too, as Nevada’s magical rank has made her a desirable match for other Primes. Controlling his immense powers is child’s play next to controlling his conflicting emotions. And now he and Nevada are confronted by a new threat within her own family. Can they face this together? Or is their world about to go up in smoke?
 My Review

I loved this book!  I have actually already read this book twice since I was able to get my hands on a copy.  I couldn't wait to get started the first time through the book and barely came up for air until I finished the story.  I knew that I would need to slow down and read it a second time before being able to write a review.  So I read this book for a second time less than three months after my first read through and I liked it just as much the second time.  There really aren't many books that I would able to do that with.  I had such a good experience reading this book.

This is the third book in the Hidden Legacy series which really does need to be read in order.  The whole series is amazing so you won't want to miss the earlier books anyway.  Nevada and Rogan have been through a lot together by the time this book starts and things have changed drastically for Nevada and her family.  Nevada and her family can no longer stay hidden so they must decide how to safely move forward.  Their agency has taken on a case for Rogan's ex, Rynda.  Rynda's husband is missing and nobody seems to want to look for him.

As we have come to expect, Nevada and Rogan will work together through some pretty tense situations in this novel.  The action gets pretty intense and is really quite exciting to read.  This book is so much more than a romance story but the romance is really well done.  Nevada and Rogan belong with each other.  I love every time they are on the page with each other.  Their chemistry is off the charts and their banter is a lot of fun.  Add a few magical elements into the mix and you have a story you can't quit thinking about.

The secondary characters are so well done.  I think that every character in this series has something to add to the story.  Nevada's family are so much fun and their feelings for each other are really genuine.  Rogan's people are loyal and a force on their own.  Cornelius and Matilda have almost become an extended part of the Baylor family and I really like the perspective that Cornelius brings to the agency.  There is even a pacifist Kodiak bear and a blue tiger that is literally out of this world.

I highly recommend this series to everyone.  I love the world that the writing pair of Ilona Andrews has crafted in this series and am in awe at the characters that live in that world.  I will keep my fingers crossed that there might eventually be a few more novels in this wonderful series.

I received an advanced reader edition of this book from Avon Books via Edelweiss.
Hidden Legacy Series

Book #1 - Burn for Me - My Review
Book #2 - White Hot - My Review
Book #3 - Wildfire - Coming July 25, 2017!


About the Author

“Ilona Andrews" is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.) They have co-authored two New York Times and USA Today bestselling series—the urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and the romantic urban fantasy of The Edge—and are working on the next volumes for both. They live in Texas with their two children and many dogs and cats.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Stacking the Shelves #79

I am really excited to participate in Stacking the Shelves, a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Reading Reality

We are in the middle of a heat wave right now. We have an above ground pool that I have to decided to make full use of in the evenings.  I haven't been around to as many blogs as I would have liked but pool time has been important :)

Digital Books
The Blackbird Season by Kate Moretti (NetGalley)
Berserker by Emmy Laybourne (NetGalley)
Nemesis by Anna Banks (NetGalley)
Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu (NetGalley)
Reincarnation Blues by Michael Poore (First to Read)
Nyxia by Scott Reintgen (First to Read)
Blackwing by Ed McDonald (First to Read)

So much for not adding any new books this week.  I did a pretty good job of staying off of NetGalley but I can't seem to resist the emails.  I am really excited to read all of the new books that were added to my pile this week.

What books do you add to your shelves this week? 
Let me know in the comments and be sure to leave a link to your own STS post!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Audiobook Review - Full Package by Lauren Blakely @LaurenBlakely3

Full Package by Lauren Blakely
Narrated by Sebastian York
Publisher: Lauren Blakely Books
Publication Date: January 9, 2017
Date Read: July 14, 2017
Length:  6 hours 6 minutes
Source: Audible Purchase
I've been told I have quite a gift. Hey, I don't just mean in my pants. I've got a big brain, too, and a huge heart of gold. And I like to use all my gifts to the fullest, the package included.

Life is smooth sailing...until I find myself stuck between a rock and a sexy roommate, which makes for one very Because scoring an apartment in this city is harder than finding true love. So even if I have to shack up with my buddy's smoking-hot and incredibly amazing little sister, a man's got to do what a man's got to do.

I can resist Josie. I'm disciplined, I'm focused, and I keep my hands to myself, even in the mere 500 square feet we share. Until the one night she insists on sliding under the covers with me. It'll help her sleep after what happened that day, she says.

Spoiler - neither one of us sleeps.

Did I mention she's also one of my best friends? That she's brilliant, beautiful, and a total firecracker? Guess that makes her the full package, too. What's a man stuck in a hard place to do?
My Review

I liked this book.  I decided to buy this book during a recent Audible sale because it sounded like fun and Sebastian York was listed as the narrator.  I knew that this would be a great book to listen to when I was in the mood for something fun and sexy.  I ended up listening to this book for hours at a time and finished it within a few day.  It wasn't a life changing read or anything but I had fun with it.

This story is told from Chase's point of view.  Chase is an emergency room doctor at one of the local hospitals.  He has been best friends with Josie's older brother for years and has always spent a lot of time with Josie.  Chase and Josie have become great friends themselves so when Josie has an opening for a roommate and Chase needs a place to live the answer seems obvious.

They are great together as roommates but Chase soon realizes that he wants something more from Josie.  He decides not to act on it because their friendship is too valuable to risk.  Of course, things take a turn and they become more than friends.  I liked these characters as a couple and thought they had great chemistry. They really just seemed to belong together.

My only real complaint with this book was that it was too predictable.  There were literally no surprises.  And I like surprises.  The story felt so similar to other things that I have read which took some of the fun out of the whole experience.  I just felt like this was a story that really could have used some kind of element that could set it apart from other books.

Sebastian York did a fantastic job with the narration.  He does such a great job with this kind of book.  He really made Chase's character come to life.  He also handled all of the other voices in the story, including Josie, very well.  Everything in the story felt very natural with his narration.  This narrator is one of the main reasons that I bought this audiobook and I thought his performance was at the caliber that I have come to expect.

I would recommend this book to fans of contemporary romance.  I had a lot of fun with this book and wanted to see Chase and Josie get their happily ever after.  I plan to read more for Lauren Blakely soon.

About the Author

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor. She is the author of eight New York Times bestsellers and sixteen USA Today bestsellers. Her series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire, as well as stand-alone romances like 21 Stolen Kisses and Big Rock. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney. Lauren believes life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that romantic songs promise. She lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Blog Tour Review - Scandalous Ever After by Theresa Romain @TheresaRomain @SourcebooksCasa

Scandalous Ever After by Theresa Romain
Series: Romance of the Turf #2
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: July 4, 2017
Date Read: July 18, 2017
Length:  352 pages
Source: NetGalley
Does love really heal all wounds?
After being widowed by a steeplechase accident in Ireland, Lady Kate Whelan abandons the turf. But once her mourning is complete, her late husband’s debts drive her to seek help in Newmarket amidst the whirl of a race meet. There she encounters antiquities expert Evan Rhys, her late husband’s roguish friend—whom she hasn’t seen since the day of his lordship’s mysterious death.

Now that fate has reunited them, Evan seizes the chance to win over the woman he’s always loved. But once back within the old stone walls of Whelan House, long-held secrets come to light that shake up everything Kate thought she knew about her marriage. Now she wonders who she can trust with her heart—and Evan must decide between love and a truth that will separate him from all his heart desires.
My Review

I really enjoyed this book!  This is the first book by Theresa Romain that I have had the chance to read and it ended up being a great one.  This book is listed as the second book in the Romance on the Turf series but it can be read fine as a stand alone novel.  Once I really got hooked by the story, I didn't want to put this book down.  I kept sneaking peeks throughout the day and before you knew it, I had reached the end of the story.

Kate and Evan are the focus of this story.  Kate became a widow two years ago when her husband died in an accident.  She is working to take care of the debts left by her husband.  Evan was Kate's husband's best friends.  They consider each other friends as well but Evan fought with Con just prior to his death and has stayed away since his passing.  Kate and Evan cross paths at one of his lectures and they decide to travel together.

I liked Kate and Evan together.   They have been friends for a very long time and know a lot about each other but quickly learn that not everything is as they had thought.  I really liked the fact that they were a bit older and seemed more mature than a lot of couples featured in romantic novels.  Kate has been married and is the mother of two children.  They both had a lot of respect for each other and were willing to stand up for themselves when needed.  I thought the chemistry between them was wonderfully done and their banter was a lot of fun.

I really liked the way the story flowed.  Since Kate and Evan spend a lot of the book traveling, we get to see them in several different environments.  Kate's family were so much fun and I loved how Evan seemed to fit in perfectly.  Evan's family were in dramatic contrast and it was fun to see them interact.  Once the pair arrived at Kate's estate, I enjoyed the way they were with the children and Con's mother.  The secondary characters really added to the overall story.

I would recommend this book to fans of historical romance.  This was a heartwarming romance that was a lot of fun to read.  I can't wait to read more of Theresa Romain's works in the future.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Sourcebooks Casablanca via NetGalley.


About the Author

Historical romance author THERESA ROMAIN pursued an impractical education that allowed her to read everything she could get her hands on. She then worked for universities and libraries, where she got to read even more. Eventually she started writing, too. She lives with her family in Wichita, Kansas.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter
Two of Theresa’s favorite summer activities:
If I were creating the sort of profile I admire, I’d tell you that my favorite summer activities include splashing in the ocean, or camping in the backyard after having a barbecue. But the truth is that I’m hundreds of miles from the nearest beach, and my favorite thing to do there was always to make a giant dolphin out of sand. And I can’t bear to be outside in 100+ heat, especially when the mosquitos are biting.

However, there are so many lovely little things about summer that I do enjoy. Specifically…
  1. Checking on the vegetables that my daughter and I planted as seeds in the spring. Just as the weather starts to get really hot, the tomatoes and green beans are ripe and ready for picking. There’s something so satisfying about growing the veggies we eat with dinner that night.
  2. Using the snow cone machine (really just a glorified ice grinder) to make frozen treats in our own home. Sure, we could make them any time of year, but summer just seems right for shaved ice with syrup on it. Once, Little Miss R and I brought a big bowl of tangerine snow cone to Mr. R while he was working out in the backyard on a hot afternoon. “That looks like heaven,” he said. Yup. Snow cones are pretty magical.
In SCANDALOUS EVER AFTER, there are no frozen treats or backyard campfires—but there *is* a sea, and Lady Kate Whelan and Evan Rhys find themselves on a road trip of a lifetime. Between ferries and floods, treats and horses and races, sickness and health and more than one scandalous interlude, these two old friends will find a love they never expected—and unearth secrets they never dreamed of. I hope you’ll enjoy this romantic summer read!


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday - Heart on Fire

 Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

My Waiting on Wednesday pick is:

Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet
Series: Kingmaker Chronicles #3
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: January 2, 2018

The riveting conclusion to the Kingmaker Chronicles, available January 2018!

Who is Catalia Fisa?

With the help of pivotal figures from her past, Cat begins to understand the root of her exceptional magic, her fated union with Griffin Sinta, and Griffin's role in shaping her destiny.

Only Cat holds the key to unlocking her own power, and that means finally accepting herself, her past, and her future in order to protect her loved ones, confront her murderous mother, and taking a final, terrifying step--reuniting all three realms and taking her place as the Queen of Thalyria.

What doesn't kill her will only make her stronger...we hope.

Pre-Order:  Amazon | BAM! | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound 

Why Am I Waiting?
I really enjoyed the first two installments in this trilogy.  I am kind of sad to see it come to an end but very hopeful that this book will be a solid conclusion.  This series has been very exciting with a lot of intense action and I have a feeling the conclusion will at least match that level of excitement.  I do have to say that I am not really a fan of the cover for this book but if the story inside is good than that is really all that matters.

What are you waiting for this week? 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

New Releases - July 18, 2017 #newreleases #newbooks

It's Tuesday!  That means it is time to make a little bit of room on the bookshelves, load up your ereader, or make your way to your local library.  In other words - It is time to get your hands on a new book!

Here are just a few books that have just been released that you may want to grab soon:

The Late Show by Michael Connelly

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly, a new thriller introducing a driven young detective trying to prove herself in the LAPD

Renée Ballard works the night shift in Hollywood, beginning many investigations but finishing none as each morning she turns her cases over to day shift detectives. A once up-and-coming detective, she's been given this beat as punishment after filing a sexual harassment complaint against a supervisor.

But one night she catches two cases she doesn't want to part with: the brutal beating of a prostitute left for dead in a parking lot and the killing of a young woman in a nightclub shooting. Ballard is determined not to give up at dawn. Against orders and her own partner's wishes, she works both cases by day while maintaining her shift by night. As the cases entwine they pull her closer to her own demons and the reason she won't give up her job no matter what the department throws at her.

Trust by Kylie Scott

Find it at:
Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love…the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.

The Library of Light and Shadow by M.J. Rose

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
In this riveting and richly drawn novel from “one of the master storytellers of historical fiction” (New York Times bestseller Beatriz Williams), a talented young artist flees New York for Paris after one of her scandalous drawings reveals a dark secret—and triggers a terrible tragedy.

In the wake of a dark and brutal World War, the glitz and glamour of 1925 Manhattan shine like a beacon for the high society set, which is desperate to keep their gaze firmly fixed to the future. But Delphine Duplessi sees more than most. At a time in her career when she could easily be unknown and penniless, like so many of her classmates from L’École de Beaux Arts, in America she has gained notoriety for her stunning “shadow portraits” that frequently expose her subjects’ most scandalous secrets—for better or for worse. Most nights Delphine doesn’t mind that her gift has become mere entertainment—a party trick—for the fashionable crowd. Though her ancestor La Lune, the legendary sixteenth-century courtesan and—like Delphine—a witch, might have thought differently.

Then, on a snowy night in February, in a penthouse high above Fifth Avenue, Delphine’s mystical talent leads to a tragedy between two brothers. Horrified, she renounces her gift.

Devastated and disconsolate, Delphine returns to her old life in the south of France where Picasso, Matisse, and the Fitzgeralds are summering. There, Delphine is thrust into recapturing the past. First by her charismatic twin brother and business manager Sebastian in his attempts to cajole her back to work and into co-dependence, then by the world famous opera singer Emma Calvé, who is obsessed with the centuries-old Book of Abraham, written by the fourteenth-century alchemist Nicolas Flamel. And finally by her ex-lover Mathieu, who is determined to lure her back into his arms, unaware of the danger that had led Delphine to flee Paris for New York five years before.

Trapped in an ancient chateau where hidden knowledge lurks in the shadows, Delphine questions and in many ways rejects what and who she loves the most—her art, her magick, her family, her brother, and Mathieu—as she tries to finally accept them as the gifts they are and to shed her fear of loving and living with her eyes wide open.

Arrowood by Mick Finlay

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
London Society takes their problems to Sherlock Holmes. Everyone else goes to Arrowood.

The Afghan War is over and a deal with the Irish appears to have brought an end to sectarian violence, but Britain's position in the world is uncertain and the gap between rich and poor is widening. London is a place where the wealthy party while the underclass are tempted into lives of crime, drugs and prostitution. A serial killer stalks the streets. Politicians are embroiled in financial and sexual scandals. The year is 1895.

The police don't have the resources to deal with everything that goes on in the capital. The rich turn to a celebrated private detective when they need help: Sherlock Holmes. But in densely populated south London, where the crimes are sleazier and Holmes rarely visits, people turn to Arrowood, a private investigator who despises Holmes, his wealthy clientele and his showy forensic approach to crime. Arrowood understands people, not clues.
More Great Books Being Released Today
(Covers link to Goodreads)

What new releases are you excited about this week?

Monday, July 17, 2017

Review - Two Nights by Kathy Reichs @KathyReichs @penguinrandom

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs
Publisher: Random House Publishing - Ballantine
Publication Date: July 11, 2017
Date Read: July 16, 2017
Length:  336 pages
Source: NetGalley
#1 New York Times bestselling author Kathy Reichs steps beyond her classic Temperance Brennan series in a new standalone thriller featuring a smart, tough, talented heroine whose thirst for justice stems from her own dark past.

Meet Sunday Night, a woman with physical and psychological scars, and a killer instinct. . . .

Sunnie has spent years running from her past, burying secrets and building a life in which she needs no one and feels nothing. But a girl has gone missing, lost in the chaos of a bomb explosion, and the family needs Sunnie's help.

Is the girl dead? Did someone take her? If she is out there, why doesn't she want to be found? It's time for Sunnie to face her own demons because they just might lead her to the truth about what really happened all those years ago.
My Review

Well, this was disappointing.  When I saw that Kathy Reichs had written a stand alone novel, I knew that I wanted to read it.   I have really enjoyed her books in the past and was looking forward to this book.  This book never clicked for me and I found myself constantly setting the book aside.  There were some parts of the book that I did enjoy and I never really considered not finishing it but it wasn't a story that did much for me.

I think one of my main problems with this book is that I didn't care for the characters.  The focus of this book is Sunday Night, or Sunnie.  Sunnie is an ex-cop that carries a lot of scars both physical and emotional.  She was paranoid but had a lot of skills that were put to the test as she tried to find out what happened to the girl she has been hired to find.  There are sections of the book spread throughout the story that talk of Sunnie's past.  I thought that learning her backstory was way too drawn out and by the time any real information was given I had lost interest.

The mystery never grabbed me.  I just had a really hard time getting into the overall story.  Of course, I wanted to know what had happened to the girl but the story seemed to move really slow.  Everything was a waiting game wrapped up in Sunnie's paranoia.  It just felt like it took really long time for things to get moving.  So much so that this turned into a book that I kept checking how much more was left just because I wanted to be done with it.

The writing felt really choppy with lots of short sentences that never really flowed.   There was a lot of really traumatic things happening in the story but I never felt like any of the characters had a single emotion.  I did think that the book had a good start.  I like the idea of Sunnie.  I like that she was quirky and a little different but that feeling faded quickly.

I am not going to be recommending this one.  I think that anyone interested in reading Kathy Reichs should start with the Temperance Brennan series which I loved.  I haven't read the whole series but have read the first 13 books or so in that series and really enjoyed them and actually plan to re-read the series at some point.  This book was a miss for me but I do look forward to reading more of her work in the future.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine via NetGalley.
About the Author

KATHY REICHS is the author of eighteen New York Times bestselling novels featuring forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan. Like her protagonist, Reichs is a forensic anthropologist—one of fewer than one hundred ever certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology. A professor in the department of anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, she is the former vice president of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, and serves on the National Police Services Advisory Council in Canada. Reichs’s own life as much as her novels are the basis for the TV show Bones, one of the longest-running series in the history of the FOX network.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter
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